Bench Press | Deadlift | WOD 8.10.15

Bench Press

Performance: Low Intensity: 65-70% x 7 x 4
Go a bit by feel and perform 4x7 at 65-70% of your 1RM. 

Fitness: 3 x 5 Linear Progression
Start light enough to add weight throughout the 8-week cycle. 


Fitness and Performance: Work up to one heavy set of 10 using perfect form.
Aim for 60-70% of your 1RM. Dead start, no touch-and-go. 

Exposure 1/8
Post loads to comments.

For Time:
500m Row
400m Run
30 Burpees 

Post time and Rx to comments.

CFSBK's Swole Crew representing at CrossFit Virtuosity yesterday. There are only two events left in the Subway Series competition, one at CrossFit Long Island City, and the last one at home. You can still sign up here!

Did You See the Programming For Our Upcoming 8-Week Cycle? 

At CFSBK, we program 8-week cycles that culminate in a Crush Weekwhen we bias longer, higher volume or benchmark workouts and overlap elements that were programmed on particular day. In training weeks one to eight, we work off a basic distribution of lifts and skills (which you can learn more about in an article Coach David wrote for his blog, Inside the Affiliate, called "Effective Programming Strategies For CrossFit Affiliates" and in an article Coach Fox wrote, pasted below). The intention of these next eight weeks is to target particular movements while still biasing general fitness as the overarching goal of training. 

Training Cycle Dates: M 8/10 - Su 10/4
Crush Week: M 10/5 - S 10/11
Transition Week: Will be the first week of the following cycle, starting October 5, 2015

Cycle Goals:

  • Add rep/set variety to barbell strength training
  • Incorporate more gymnastics strength training
  • One dedicated WOD day each week

Monday: Bench Press + Deadlift + WOD
Wednesday: Squat + WOD
Thursday: Snatch + Gymnastics Strength Bias EMOM + WOD
Saturday: WOD, no dedicated lift with a Clean and Jerk bias
Sunday: Squat + WOD 

Get even more details on the Current Programming Cycle tab, which can always be accessed in the left-hand column under Member Resources.

The Underlying Philosophy Behind Programming at CFSBK

By Chris Fox 

At CFSBK, we program for long-term health and fitness utilizing strength training, Olympic lifting, gymnastics, and mostly CrossFit-style couplet and triplet conditioning work. While some days look a bit different, a routine day at CrossFit South Brooklyn looks like this: DROMs, Warm Ups, Lifting, WOD prep, followed by a WOD. Let’s look at some of the reasons why we structure and program this way in terms of what each segment offers. 

DROMs: A general, light, dynamic warm up of joints and soft tissue will get your heart rate up a bit and help you enter a training mindset. It starts to get the sleep out of your eyes or the emails in your inbox out of your head. It also offers time for the QOD [LINK], which can lighten the mood and let you get to know a bit about the people you’ll be working hard with. 

Warm Ups: You need to be warmed up properly to move well and help prevent injury. Standardized warm ups move you through a wide range of motion, get you sweaty, and give you an opportunity to develop some strength in basic gymnastics and barbell movements you’ll regularly see in classes. Focused barbell drills review the positions and intentions of the lift you’ll be working on that day. We structure the drills so that you also get warm as you’re doing them.

Lifts: You need to be stronger, as strength is the physical adaptation with the greatest carryover to the rest of your training and to life in general. You may have noticed that we squat twice each week. We’ve been programming this way for years and for good reason. I can’t say it any better than Mark Rippetoe so here’s a quote from the man himself:

“There is simply no other exercise, and certainly no machine, that provides the level of central nervous activity, improved balance and coordination, skeletal loading and bone density enhancement, muscular stimulation and growth, connective tissue stress and strength, psychological demand and toughness, and overall systemic conditioning than the correctly performed full squat.” 

We agree. 

The Olympic lifts train power, strength, coordination, flexibility, and overall athleticism. If you can throw a heavy weight overhead, catch it in a rock bottom overhead squat, then stand it up (PR bar slam optional), almost all of the other things we do will be easier. As far as the other lifts go, the bench is the best upper body strength developer and is simply fun. The press is another great upper body strength developer—it keeps the shoulder girdle healthy and works the muscles that stabilize your trunk extremely well. Every few cycles we’ll program an upper body gymnastics movement as a strength developer, as this allows us to have some fun and vary the stimulus a bit. The deadlift will get your back stronger like no other exercise can, and it’s almost always the lift where you’ll be able to move the most weight, automatically making it pretty cool. The average lifter should be able to deadlift more than they can squat. If that's not the case for you, we recommend coming in on days when we're pulling weights off the floor. 

WOD Prep and WOD: We discuss the intent of the WOD at the whiteboard, along with scaling options and strategies. The WOD is where we get our conditioning and develop the ability to work at high intensities for longer than a set of squats can take us. As stated above, we use mostly mixed modal couplets and triplets. Our conditioning tends to range from short, high intensity three- to seven-minute efforts, to medium intensity eight- 15-minute efforts on most days, with a lower intensity 20-minute-plus WOD thrown in once a week or so. 

Even when the total time is above 15 minutes, we’ll often use interval work so that intensity stays high, given that high intensity (anaerobic) training has positive carryovers to low intensity (aerobic) training and offers other benefits. High intensity training can develop and preserve muscle mass, whereas long slow distance training can cause you to lose it if used exclusively. High intensity training creates EPOC (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption), which sets your metabolism up to burn slightly more fat after exercise compared to endurance-type training—a boon if you’re looking to lose extra fat. Plus it’s time effective. If you can get the same or better benefit metabolically with shorter high intensity training, then the only reason to do the long slow stuff is if you don’t want to work that hard. 

Consider that maybe you don’t need more “cardio,” but actually need to work harder. I’d argue that hard work will also make you stronger in non-physical ways. We throw something like “Murph” at you a few times each year since we know you secretly love it and it’s cool to see that you haven’t lost your ability to go that long in spite of all your gainz. If we programmed hero type WODs all the time however, we'd likely have an oft-injured population with a narrow scope of fitness. Time and intensity have an inverse relationship in that the longer you work, the lower the intensity must be. By intensity, I mean power output. I know a marathon can be an intense experience, but you’re not working as hard on those miles as you would be while doing 800m repeats. Furthermore, the longer you go, the more reps you’re going to be doing and the more fatigued you’ll be. You don’t move better on the 69th deadlift compared to the 9th, trust me. Remember: we’re programming for our general population to be fit for the long term—not to crush a week’s worth of hero WODs followed by six weeks of PT. 

Cool Down: This portion is largely up to you, but you really don’t need us to babysit while you run, row an easy 1000 meters, or spend some quality time with a foam roller. 

To wrap up, CFSBK’s programming is designed to give you the most training value. We do these things because they are effective, not because they are in vogue or even because our members demand that we do things a certain way. We’ve withstood a few silly fitness trends in favor of what science and experience says works and will continue to do so, evolving as we learn. Training here is hard, it’s consistent, and it isn’t always exciting or sexy, but it works. We’re lucky to have so many of you who seem to agree and are willing to put in the hard work!

How'd Crush Week go? What did you think of the programming last cycle? Give us your thoughts in the comments below, or through our online feedback form (always located in the left-hand column at the bottom of Member Resources). We love hearing from you!  




AMRAP 20 minutes:
30 Box Jumps 24/20
20 Push Presses 115/75
30 Pull-Ups

Scale load and volume as appropriate, but this should be a bit of a slog. If you can jump on the Rx'd box and do 5 reps at a time of the Rx'd push press and pull-ups, then Rx today. If not, scale some volume and or load and pull-up variant.

Post rounds and Rx to comments.
Compare to 2.2.2011

Check out Episode 2 of CrossFit's "Road to Conviction" series! While incarcerated, Fletcher Tholin discovered CrossFit. Watch his rehabilitation in this eight-part series.

  • Kids Club is CANCELED today, since Coach Janelle is out of town!

Good Luck to Our Subway Series Competitors!

The Subway Series is happening over at CrossFit Virtuosity today. Here are the CFSBKers that will be representing for us:

Pierre D.        
Brendan N.    
Alex N.          
Brad D.
Jason M.
Mare L.
Coach K HarpZ
Lauren S.
Coach Jess
Coach Whit

A Tribute to the Incredibly Swole Bro Who Plays Gaston at Disney World GQ 


Open Workout 12.4

Open Workout 12.4

AMRAP 12 Minutes:
150 Wall Balls 20/10, 14/9
90 Double-Unders
30 Muscle-Ups

Substitute chest-to-bar or kipping pull-ups for muscle-ups.

Post time and Rx to comments.
Compare to 11.10.14 and 5.29.14 

Coach Jeremy competed in the USAPL meet last weekend, and his bench press was an all-time competition PR (video above)! Here’s his report: “The meet went well overall. The 424# squat ties the best I'd ever done in competition, but it was way easier this time than the last time (2 years ago) and I weighed in much lighter at 178lb versus 196lb. The bench was an all-time competition (pause) bench PR. I had hit 325 2 years ago (at that heavier weight), getting 330 (150kg) was a longstanding goal, so I was really pumped to hit it. DL was blah.  It was late in the day and I was kinda done with the meet.  Hit my opener, the 451, but my 2nd attempt was ugly and I gave up on it quick and passed my third.” 

  • Want to try something other than group class today? Check out Yoga for Athletes at 10am, Active Recovery at 11am and 12pm, or Open Gym from 2-4pm!
  • Kids Club is CANCELED tomorrow, as Coach Janelle is out of town!
  • Happy birthday, Simon H.!

Check Out Our Upcoming Training Cycle Template!

Training Cycle Dates: M 8/10 - Su 9/27
Crush Week: M 9/28 - S 10/4
Transition Week: Will be the first week of the following cycle, starting October 5, 2015

Cycle Goals:

  • Add rep/set variety to barbell strength training
  • Incorporate more gymnastics strength training
  • One dedicated WOD day each week

Monday: Bench Press + Deadlift + WOD
Wednesday: Squat + WOD
Thursday: Snatch + Gymnastics Strength Bias EMOM + WOD
Saturday: WOD, no dedicated lift with a Clean and Jerk bias
Sunday: Squat + WOD 

Performance Bench Cycle

1 and 4: Low - 65-70%x7x4
2 and 5: Medium - 75-80%x5x4
3 and 6: High - 85-90%x3x4
7: Heavy 3
8: 1RM Test 

Fitness Bench Cycle

3x5 Linear Progression
Last exposure is a 1-3RM test 

Fitness and Performance Deadlift Cycle

Increasing loads through the 8-week cycle, warm up to one top set of:
1 - Heavy 10
2 - Heavy 8
3 - Heavy 5
4 - Heavy 5
5 - Heavy 5
6 - Heavy 3
7 - Heavy 3
8 - 1-3RM test 

Performance Squat Cycle

Back Squat first and then Front Squat. 4 total work sets of squats each squat day.
Low - 65-70%x7x2
Medium - 75-80%x5x2
High - 85-90%x3x2
15 Rotating Exposures (Wed-Low, Sun-Med, Wed-High)
Last exposure is a 1RM test 

Fitness Squat Cycle

Goal is to add weight each week.
Wednesday Front Squat
3x10 (start at about 75% of your best 3x5 from last cycle, or 60-70% of a 1RM)
Heavy Triple Test
Heavy Single Test

Sunday Back Squat
3x10 (start at about 75% of your best 3x5 from last cycle, or 60-70% of a 1RM)
Heavy Triple Test
Heavy Single Test

Want to learn more about CFSBK’s programming? Check out these articles:

Orphaned Kangaroo Finds Comfort in Teddy Bear CBS News 


Rest Day

Coach K HarpZ owning all the weight at the CrossFit 718 Summer Games | Photo by the multitalented Coach MeLo

The 2015 Subway Series Continues This Sunday at CrossFit Virtuosity 

The event isn't full yet—you can still sign up here! The workout is below:

"Deficit Diane"

Rx Division
For time (15 minute cap):
28 deadlifts, 185/125
28 HSPU, to floor / 1 abmat
21 deadlifts, 225/155
21 HSPU, to 1" deficit / floor
15 deadlifts, 275/185
15 HSPU, 2" deficit / 1" deficit
9 deadlifts, 315/205 
9 HSPU, 3" deficit / 2" deficit

Scaled Division
For time (15 minute cap):
28 deadlifts, 135/95
28 incline push-ups, 18/36"
21 deadlifts, 185/115
21 incline push-ups, 12/24"
15 deadlifts, 215/135
15 incline push-ups, 6"/12"
9 deadlifts, 235/155 
9 push-ups, no incline

For CFSBK's event on August 23, we still need judges and a score keeper! Judges are expected to monitor range-of-motion and reps for each workout. Coach David will do a session to review movement standards and protocol before the event. The score keeper needs to do data entry on the scoring system and should be comfortable with spreadsheets. Please email David [at] if you're interested.

How CrossFit (and a Little Cancer) Helped Me Grow a Bit... Down There The Huffington Post
Exercise May Make Tumors Less Aggressive, More Likely to Respond to Treatment American Cancer Society 


Crush Week WOD 8.6.15

AMRAP 30 Minutes:
10 Hang Power Snatches 115/75
10 Toes to Bar
270m Run

Post time and Rx to comments.

Did you know we also teach the kiddos to fly in our CrossFit Preschool and Kids programs?? Just kidding. But Coaches David and Janelle do teach physical development through games and kid appropriate "workouts." Most importantly, they're all about having FUN! Learn more and sign your offspring up here for our August classes. Tristan D. is pictured above. 

Catching Up With CFSBK Classifieds

  • CFSBK family Jay (JayStar), Adele, and Niko are looking for a new family for their nanny of 9 years, Hazel. Ideally they would like to keep her on part-time and share with another family, but are open to a full-time position if they find a wonderful family who needs full-time help. Check out CFSBK Classifieds for details.
  • Dr. Mike wants to buy a used Concept II Erg! More details here.
  • Nino needs to find a podiatrist in the NYC area. Any recommendations for him?
  • Muxx is looking for a good motorcycle mechanic. Come on CFSBK Moto Club, help her out!

FoxTrot 5K Race for Parkinson's Research

Team Fox, the community fundraising arm at The Michael J. Fox Foundation, is hosting a FoxTrot 5K race on Thursday, August 13th in Riverside Park (103rd Street) at 7pm. Registration is $35 and includes free beer at the post-race party in Cafe Ellington right in the park!

100% of the proceeds will go directly to funding Parkinson's research! You can register online by 8/11 here.

If you have any questions, please contact CFSBK OG Steph P. at shpaddock [at]

Grilling Meat and Cancer, an Infographic Precision Nutrition
Real World Overhead Mobility for Weightlifting Catalyst Athletics 


Crush Week WOD 8.5.15

3 Rounds, For Time:
5 Deadlifts 365/255
10 Alternating Pistols 35/25
30 Handstand Push-Ups 

5 Rounds, For Time:
8 Deadlifts 185/125
8 Front Squats 185/125
8 Feet Elevated Push-Ups 24/20"

Post time and Rx to comments.

CFSBK's crew took this adorable photo at CrossFit Queens's Subway Series last weekend. There's still time to sign up for the upcoming events (see our right-hand sidebar for the locations of each). All athletes MUST register for each individual event in advance in order to participate. REGISTER HERE

  • Happy birthday, Malachy M. and Jesse S.!

Want to Get Better at Olympic Lifting? Join the Next Level Weightlifting Club at CFSBK

The Next Level Weightlifting Club offers Olympic lifting with strength training and mobility all in one. Weightlifting classes will be held in two-hour windows and taught by Coach Frank Murray. While there will be a start to every class, you are allowed to show up at any time during the two-hour training session to lift. Those involved will receive the week's programming which they can either do during the training session or on their own times during open gyms. If you are unable to participate in class on a regular basis, you also have access to Coach Frank via email and can submit videos to be evaluated and critiqued. Think of him as your personal coach.

While there are universal weekly workouts, they can and likely will change from person to person depending on each individual's needs. All people are different and therefore require different things to be successful. At Next Level Weightlifting Club, we take that into account and make adjustments as needed to optimize progress. 

Typical Sessions Include:

  • Group Warm-up
  • Heavy Lift (Snatch/Clean/Jerk)
  • Light Lift (Snatch/Clean/Jerk)
  • Squats
  • Pulls/Presses
  • Mobility 


Monday 7:30-9:30pm
Wednesday 7:30-9:30pm
Friday 6:30-8:30am


Drop-In: $30
10 Class Punch Card: $250 ($25 / Class)

Recurring Monthly Memberships:
3x/Oly $200 (Weightlifting Club only)
2x/Oly $150 (Weightlifting Club only) 

Group Group Class Add Ons:

If you'd like to combine Olympic Lifting with our Group class offerings, you can include an add on to your membership which can be used on CrossFit, Open Gym, Yoga, Pilates or Gymnastics Class.

+2x Group Class Add-on $100
+3x Group Class Add-on $150


This program is ongoing so participants may sign up whenever they want.
Your credit card will be charged immediately at a prorated rated for the rest of the current month. This membership will then automatically renew on the first of every month moving forward until cancelled.

Any questions regarding this program can be sent to info [at] and olympiclifter88 [at]

Hilarious Highlights of Toddler Gymnastics Babble
Can You Beat Top European CrossFit Athlete Will Kane in This Tough Workout? Joe (Find more UK CrossFit lovin' here
See How Healthy Your State Is By How Often People Tweet About Donuts and Exercise Fast Company


Rest Day

Charlie N. at her first USAPL meet last Saturday. She took third in her weight class, and shared some thoughts from the experience with us below! 

  • Happy birthday, David G.
  • If you're not too wiped from Crush Week already, check out AntiGravity tonight at 7:30pm (or Sundays at 2pm). This class focuses on gymnastics skill and strength components that are most commonly demanded in CrossFit workouts, using a variety of skill exercises, progressions, weighted and strict practice, and other techniques to teach, develop, and perfect your bodyweight movements. Hit up Coaches Noah or Arturo with any questions! 
  • Or check out Active Recovery at 6:30pm, or Pilates with KH at 7:30pm!

August CrossFit Preschool and CrossFit Kids Classes Are Now Available For Registration!

CrossFit Preschool and CrossFit Kids emphasizes physical development through games and kid appropriate "workouts". Most importantly, we’re all about having FUN! Developing a positive association between fitness, physical activity, and the joy of movement is the primary goal of our program. Our classes are comprised of obstacle courses, relay races, basic gymnastics, games and other engaging physical activities. Think of it like the gym class you wish you had growing up!

Mondays (8/3 - 8/24):
CF Kids - 4:30p - 5:30p  

Wednesdays (8/5 - 8/26):
CF Preschool - 3:30p - 4:30p
CF Kids - 4:30p - 5:30p 

Fridays (8/7 - 8/28):
CrossFit Preschool - 10:00a - 11:00a

Sundays (8/9 - 8/30):
CrossFit Preschool - 10:00a - 11:00a


1x/week - $120
2x/week - $200 

1x/week - $102
2x/week - $170

20% for older sibling


Email Janelle [at] if you have any questions or need help registering.

Charlie N. Shares Thoughts From Her First USAPL Meet

Congrats to all our CFSBK folks who competed in the USAPL meet last Saturday, including Coaches Fox (read his post-meet reflections in yesterday's comments), Jeremy, and Margie, and Rob Is. Front Desk superstar Charlie N. also competed, and sent us this cool write-up about her first experience at a meet.

Saturday was a crazy, intense, emotional, nerve-wracking but incredible rewarding experience. To say I was out of my comfort zone would be a massive understatement. 

I somehow came third in my weight class. (72kg) Because it was my first big meet, I assumed I would be somewhere near the bottom or floating in the middle of my weight class and I had no idea how well I was doing because I wasn't looking at anyone else's numbers at all. This was how I missed them calling my name to give me my medal- I was upstairs eating sardines at the time. I really couldn't believe it when the woman who came second found me and told me to go get my medal.

There were so many people and the whole meet felt extremely disorganized and chaotic. Luckily Coach Margie had made it easy for me and given me my attempts beforehand with Plan A if I felt amazing and Plan B if things did not feel so great, so I really didn't have to think very much about anything. All of my attempts aside from the last ones, were weights I had done recently.

I had all of my warm-up sets figured out in KG and even color coded so I would know exactly what plates to use so the warm-up would be easy but unfortunately the warm-up area was a disaster. There were not enough plates there at all, so I had to wing it a bit and I am not sure I warmed up very efficiently at all.

I thought I would be completely freaked out with that many people watching but in the end it was just me and the judge in front of me. In a way I want to do this again and get better at that part. Everything felt heavier to me on the day because it was such unfamiliar territory. I feel it is something I could learn to do a lot better with more practice.

I missed my second squat attempt on depth, but still added weight. I sank my last attempt as much as I could and it was a very ugly squat, but I fought with everything I had and somehow made the lift. That was definitely one of the most difficult things I have ever done in my life, but there was no way I was missing that lift. Pretty sure there was an American Record attempt happening at the same time on the platform beside me so there probably weren't even many people paying attention but I could hear Coach Jeremy shouting behind me to keep going. He later said something along the lines of that that was more of a test of will than of physical strength.

I also missed my first bench press attempt. The safeties were high and the bar hit them at the same time as my chest which distracted me and so I missed the rack command. I went with my Plan B after that and made the following two lifts after getting the spotters to move the safeties down.

By the time we got to the deadlift I was really tired. I did the warm-ups too fast and could probably have done with a couple of extra sets and rest between. I just felt the pressure of so many people sharing the space. Everything felt heavy and I was sore from the other lifts but I did it and I went with my Plan B and PRed. It wasn't the PR I wanted but it was the right decision on the day. 

If I do this again, which I probably will, I will take my time—not only warming up but also setting up for each lift. I think that might have made my Plan A more achievable.

I want to thank Margie for not only believing in me and helping me to get so much stronger but also for being the voice of reason throughout my training and all day on Saturday even as she was participating and kicking ass herself. I have a tendency to want to always go heavier but I have learned in the last while that just because I can lift something, it doesn't necessarily mean that I should. And of course thanks also to the Squat Whisperer for his squat whisperin'.

Still can't believe I went home with a medal. :)

Charlie’s Numbers:
Squat: 275.6
Bench: 137.8
Deadlift: 325.2

Total: 738.6

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Robbie Maddison's Pipe Dream Transworld Motocross